There is a truth that is so obvious that it is often overlooked—E-Newsletters are, first and foremost, NEWS letters. Their main intent should be to be a Communication Tool first, a Branding Tool second, and an Income Generator last, and then only occasionally! Far too often this fact is over-looked, and E-Newsletters have a mishmash of goals, none of which seem to get accomplished. This is something that an email marketing specialist is aware of and keeps in mind when dealing with their clients.
Email marketing experts know that the very best E-Newsletters tend to cover a lot of topics; that “Content is King” so you need lots of quality content and that the “delivery schedule” is vital - you need to sent it out the same day each time (third Monday of the month, for example). The E-Newsletter should include several main Articles, numerous "Tips & Tidbits" and often a Monthly Schedule/ Calendar. When drafted properly, with engaging text, not only will the E-Newsletter not be deleted before it is opened, it will actually be looked forward to by all those who receive it! To demonstrate this, let’s use a Sporting Goods Store for our example.
The main articles may, or may not, be about your company per se. Rather, they might be about important issues in your field. For example, you might include an article about projected new hunting or fishing laws in the state, or even information on a particular species. The more information you make available the better.
In regard to “Tips & Tidbits,” you might tell recipients which ponds and lakes are scheduled to be stocked, or what flies work especially well during a particular time of the month. We would suggest that you keep your tips germane to the topics associated with area of expertise. However, “The Five Best Restaurants to have Breakfast in before 6 am” might be a tip that sportsman would find most useful!
The Monthly Schedule/Calendar probably should include special events you are planning, such as one-day sales or “How to” classes. Again, it can also reflect things that would be of interest to your recipients and germane to your business, including some of the things you might be including in your “Tips & Tidbits.”
When drafting your E-Newsletter it should be remembered that this tool allows you to let people know who you are, and what you are passionate about! It should, obviously, revolve around your business and area of expertise. It is also a wonderful way to highlight some of your Key Personnel and to honor some of your Major Clients!
As newspapers often have ads, it is acceptable for our Newsletters to have "Sidebar Ads” offering Discounts and other Special Offers. Another acceptable ploy is to include a "Click Here” button after an article that will take the reader to a Selling Page. For example, if you feature an article about Fly Tying, you can have your readers click through to where they can sign up for a class on Tying Flies.
Again, in a nutshell, an E-Newsletter is a "Letter of News.” It allows you to share with others what’s new in your business or group, and, for the most part, allows the reader to absorb information rather than take action. That does not mean, however, that it can’t be a Marketing Tool. To make your E-Newsletters as effective as possible it would, no doubt, behoove you to contact an email marketing firm sooner rather than later!